A Moral Dilemma
I've finally chosen all the appliances for our upcoming reno. I am so grateful to everyone here for their help and candid opinions.
Early on in the process our kitchen contractor recommended a small local appliance dealer who he said would give us exceptional service. And they have, insofar as we've needed service. The KC assures us he gets nothing save good cooperation from this dealer; i.e.., no kickbacks, and I believe him.
I visited the shop once, and we've exchanged one phone call and 2 emails on such topics as pricing, availability, dimensions and he has also given me his recommendations which seem accurate and fair. He has prepared a detailed quote and attached mfg dimension diagrams, etc, for the install. I was a little annoyed that the dealer never mentioned rebates -- every appliance save our warming drawer has a significant rebate -- but I found the info via AJM's website.
But on the 5 appliances we need, this local dealer runs $1,000+ higher than AJMadison, factoring in an $85 delivery fee. I'm not even counting the state tax we WOULDN'T pay at AJM as I don't think that is fair to hold against a business. That said, our state tax on appliances is 7%, so $400+
This dealer maintains a shop and pays the associated overhead so that I can go in and SEE things -- he had the oven, warming drawer, and DW on the floor. And he will probably give good service if something goes wrong. I see here from past posts that you can't always count on AJM for that. But a thousand dollars is a lot of money. He's charging +$285 and +$275 more on an Elux fridge and Elux wall oven alone.
But if we all keep looking in showrooms then making the actually purchase online, everyone -- especially our mom-n-pop shops -- will go out of business. And then we will all be at the mercy of places like AJM. Have you ever asked a local shop to price match, and if so, did they? Or is that even fair? Can they do that and survive? How thin are the margins on appliances, anyway? This local shop looks like a hole in the wall, BTW, tho they carry Viking, Thermador, Aga, etc. Still, no one looks to be living high on the hog.